Eye on Science

October 11, 2014 - Ecological Monitoring Project - Tree Data; Beartooth Mountains, Montana

July 4, 2014 - Rockets' Red Glare; Culbertson Saddle Club, Montana

Fireworks originated in China sometime around 200 B.C. but have become a staple in Independence Day celebrations in America. Fireworks are a combination of fast burning (the propellant that shoots the firework into the sky) gun powder (mixture of charcoal and salt peter [potassium nitrate]) and "salts" that cause colors to stream across the sky as they are heated. To learn more about how the colors appear in fireworks, watch my YouTube video from my Chemistry class HERE. This picture was taken at the Oelkers/Luft Family Reunion fireworks show at the Culbertson, MT Saddle Club using a tripod and leaving the shutter open for 6 seconds to capture the brilliant light and colors in the darkness.

Details: Canon EOS 70D - ISO 100 28mm 0 EV f/11 6.0sec
Edits: iPhoto - Saturation: 100%; Definition: 97; Highlights 100; Shadows 36

June 8, 2014 - Eye of the Bison, Yellowstone National Park

The American Bison (Bison bison), also known as Buffalo, was nearly eradicated by earlier settlers and government killing campaigns in the mid to late 1800's. Today almost 5,000 live in Yellowstone National Park. The bulls, like the one pictured here, can reach 2000 lbs. This large mammal can run up to 35 miles per hour and has been known to gore tourists that get close enough to look peer into their eyes (imagine how fast I had to run after I snapped this shot!).
~Craig Beals

Details: Canon EOS 70D - ISO 640 100mm 0 EV f/5 1/125
Edits: Color saturation
More info on Yellowstone's Bison Herd: http://www.nps.gov/yell/naturescience/bison.htm

June 28, 2014 - Sunset over Bozeman, Montana

On June 27th and 28th, areas of South Central Montana saw some of the most beautiful cloud formations set with a backdrop of deep blue skies. The turbulent skies, due to the jet stream pushing warm Southern weather up against cool weather from the North, lent to amazing vistas reminding us why this is Big Sky Country. On the night of June 28th, while visiting friends in Bozeman, the skies lit up at sundown and we raced to get a good vantage point on a hilltop overlooking town toward the sun setting in the West. We were rewarded with this...
~Craig Beals
(contrast altered slightly)